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              Toddler-Friendly Beef Stew        

    Two of Everything: Toddler-Friendly Beef Stew

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Toddler-Friendly Beef Stew

This is a really basic, easy, beef stew recipe.  It's not going to win Masterchef, but it's good, comforting, proper homemade grub.  It seems crazy posting a recipe for stew in the middle of July, but the weather is so awful this is what I feel like eating!  I use whatever vegetables I can get for this stew (it usually depends what's in my veg box), but I always use something onion-related, such as leeks or shallots, and then carrots, squash, parsnips (but only in winter when the frost has sweetened them), swede, and occasionally some Jerusalem Artichokes, when they're in season.  Just use equal quantities of each.

Not the best picture in the world but had to make it a quick one - toddlers snapping round my ankles!


500g braising / stewing steak, or shin of beef, cut into chunks
500 -700g vegetables (depending how much veg you like!), cut into bite-sized chunks (see note, above)
1 heaped tablespoon plain flour
500 ml fresh chicken stock (I use salt-free stock, but you could always use a low-salt stock cube)
1 fat sprig thyme
1 bay leaf (I keep fresh ones in the freezer)


Preheat the oven to 160c.  Put a tiny bit of olive oil in a frying pan and brown the meat all over in batches.  Transfer the meat to a casserole dish.  Put about 150ml water in the frying pan and let it bubble, scraping all the sticky bits off the bottom.  

While this is bubbling, put the vegetables in the casserole dish with the meat and stir in the flour.  Pour over the stock and give it a good stir then add the herbs and the water from the frying pan.  Add some ground black pepper and bring it to the boil.  There should be enough liquid to just cover the meat and vegetables; if there isn't quite enough, add some water from a boiling kettle.  Put a lid on, then pop it in the oven for 3-4 hours.  

Great served with jacket or mashed potatoes.  


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